The intermediate and advanced piano music of Dmitry Kabalevsky: pedagogical implications

Masters Thesis

Pingel, Kathy. 1997. The intermediate and advanced piano music of Dmitry Kabalevsky: pedagogical implications. Masters Thesis Master of Music. University of Southern Queensland.

The intermediate and advanced piano music of Dmitry Kabalevsky: pedagogical implications

TypeMasters Thesis
AuthorPingel, Kathy
SupervisorLorenz, Wendy
Lepherd, Laurence
Institution of OriginUniversity of Southern Queensland
Qualification NameMaster of Music
Number of Pages168

This study investigates the intermediate and advanced piano repertoire of 20th Century Russian composer, Dmitry Borisovich Kabalevsky, with the main focus being on the artistic and pedagogical relevance of these works.

Background details of the composer's life, as they pertain to these works and to his style of composition, were gathered through a review of the literature found in books, doctoral theses, encyclopedias, journal articles and programme notes accompanying compact disc recordings and editions of his music.

A selection of Kabalevsky's intermediate and advanced piano compositions was chosen for an in-depth analysis of their artistic, technical and pedagogical aspects. A broad examination of their structure is also made. The works selected for analysis include Concerto No. 2 in G minor Op. 23, Numbers 1,2,3,4,6 and 24 from Twenty-Four Preludes Op. 38 and Sonata No. 2 in E flat major Op. 45.

In order to gauge both the level of awareness and usage of Kabalevsky's piano repertoire, two written surveys were formulated and issued to teachers and performers within Australia. The first of these (Survey A) was distributed to private studio teachers, most of whom were teaching at an elementary and intermediate level, whilst the second one (Survey B) was sent to teachers who were likely to have had experience in teaching and/or performing more advanced works.

In order to determine the frequency with which Kabalevksy's piano works are set for examinations, a review of various syllabuses, including the Australian Music Examination Board (AMEB), Trinity College of London and Austrlaina and New Zealand Cultural Arts Limited (ANZCA), was undertaken. These findings, together with the results of the surveys (which include comments made by a number of teachers/performers within Australia about a selection of these pieces) and the researcher's in-depth analyses, were all considered in ascertaining the usage and level of awareness of Kabalevsky's intermediate and advanced piano repertoire within Australia and the artistic and pedagogical contribution of these works.

The in-depth analyses of a selection of Kabalevsky's intermediate and advanced piano works revealed that Kabalevsky made a worthy contribution to the piano literature of this standard, and that these works are also of considerable pedagogical value.

The feedback from the surveys revealed that whilst most of the respondents had a high repect and regard for Kabalevsky's elementary piano compositions, the usage and familiarity with his intermediate and advanced works was significantly less. Many of the factors suggested for the lack of awareness of this repertoire were extraneous to the merits of the pieces themselves and, hence, it is hoped that a greater awareness of its existence and an appreciation of the artistic and pedagogical contribution of this literature, will bring it to the attention of students, teachers and performers alike.

Keywordskeyboard music, piano teaching
ANZSRC Field of Research 2020360302. Music composition and improvisation
360304. Music performance
390101. Creative arts, media and communication curriculum and pedagogy
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